This year, the Y Ballarat celebrated the significant milestone of 20 years of managing and supporting early education services in Victoria. Commencing with a handful of kindergartens in Central Goldfields, over time the early years management portfolio has grown to 93 services in 21 LGAs, with over 4,300 children attending our early learning programs!
Y Ballarat Early Years Management officially became Y Kinders in 2022, reflective of our state-wide presence and operations.
To mark the anniversary, Kinder teams were keen to have a keepsake children’s book to enjoy in their services and to read in following years. A collaborative compilation, it features a unique and likable illustrated character, inspired by the triangle that is a well-known element in the Y logo.
The development of the new celebratory mascot has been an inclusive, creative process, with children at all Y kindergartens invited to suggest a name for the new triangular character. Over a hundred diverse suggestions were submitted, but it was the nomination of “Zippy” from Liane at Mirboo North Kindergarten that really captured the energy and movement of the travelling triangle.
Kindergartens across the state were also invited to contribute ideas, photos and details about their location and program. Children were asked to help create the story by imagining if Zippy visited their service, which activities the Travelling Triangle might enjoy.
Ideas put forward included participating in Bush Kinder at North Ringwood Preschool, learning about dinosaurs at Templestowe Preschool, feeding chickens in Mirboo North Kinder and ELC and enjoying favourite playground activities. At the Y Kinders and in all our programs, building in children’s voice and opportunities to feel connected are maximised where ever possible. Activities such as the creation of the children’s story, help build a sense of being listened to, recognised and being connected to local and broader communities.
“Zippy” has taken many kindergartens by storm, with Zippy-themed activity sheets, drawings and artwork all being enthusiastically created.
With so many exciting locations to visit, the book series will highlight a number of kindergartens and activities in each edition, with Zippy experiencing 13 early learning services in “Zippy’s First Adventure”. The books will be distributed to all 93 services to be kept, read and enjoyed for years to come.